Azar Nafisi:Writing the book was a very un-Iranian thing to do. Most of my Iranian friends were raised never to reveal family secrets to outsiders, certainly not strangers. We don’t air our dirty linen in public, Nafisi’s mother would tell her. But after her parents’ deaths, she found herself determined to erase “the fictions my parents told us — fictions about themselves as well as others.” The memoir, she writes, is “a response to my own inner censor and inquisitor.” The revolution, which destroyed the certainties of her family’s lives, made remembrance more critical. “If the present was fragile and fickle, the past could become a surrogate home,” she writes.